Daily Mail

Can an internship for grown-ups help you?

- LINDA WHITNEY

THE Government has announced a £5 million fund to help parents return to work after a career break. But how do these so- called ‘returnship­s’ work? Emma Bowman, now a senior manager at Lloyds Banking Group, says: ‘Fifteen years ago, I decided to take an extended career break to raise my six children.

‘But when I wanted to return to the City, my job applicatio­ns were rejected because of my career break.’

So Emma researched returnship­s and found the Lloyds Banking Group Returners Programme. Those on the scheme receive training and mentoring. At the end, Emma was offered a job.

She says: ‘Anyone struggling to make the transition back into work should consider a returnship. It bridges the gap for people with a career break on their CV.’

Fiona Cannon, director of inclusion and diversity at Lloyds Banking Group, says: ‘A career break should not be viewed as a disadvanta­ge. It’s experience and transferab­le leadership skills that are important.’

Employers offering returnship­s include the Home Office, IT firm Capgemini, Balfour Beatty and KPMG. See womenretur­ners.com.

Research in 2016 from accountant­s PwC estimated 427,000 UK women are on a career break and likely to return — but 65 per cent could be working below their potential.

The figures suggest the career break penalty amounts to about £4,000 for each woman.

Laura Hinton, head of people at PwC, says: ‘It’s great to see the Government’s cash injection to promote returnship­s.

‘They are a great way to break down the career break penalty.’

 ??  ?? Back: Emma Bowman
Back: Emma Bowman

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